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Old 06-07-2009, 10:31 AM   #1
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Is a MI2:SE possible at all?

As much as I'd love to see an MI2:SE happen (since MI2 is my favourite adventure game ever), I'm having doubts...

Of course one major factor will be the sales of the MI1:SE, but there are some technical aspects, that make a MI2:SE much less likely than a MI1:SE:

- MI1 is probably 1/2 the volume of MI2
- The art in MI2 is much more refined than the art in MI1, thus remaking the backgrounds would be much more difficult
- MI1 has about 40 minutes of music... MI2 has about 2 hours... re-recording it would be a much bigger task
- MI2 uses iMuse to fade between different music-tracks and -arrangements... adapting that to digital audio requires a lot of work

On the other hand:

- Using MI1 to test out receptions of an SE makes sense, as it's one of the most successful LA-titles, and yet not as complex as a lot of their other games... this doesn't mean, that MI1's volume is the maximum they're willing to invest into
- if the original background-paintings for MI2 still exist (which I'll assume, judging by the "Rogue Leaders"-book), it makes things a lot easier for the artists, since they can simply re-scan them at a higher res, and work from there
- if adapting MI2's iMuse-score is too complex to transfer to digital audio, they could simplify the way the music plays in the game, and simply crossfade in case of a music change

Whatever it'll be, it would be pretty random for LA to just put out the MI:SE, if there aren't at least thoughts about other SEs in the back of their heads.

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Old 06-07-2009, 11:25 AM   #2
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Maybe they'll investigate how people feel about the updated graphics, because if it turns out a lot of people don't mind playing the old version they could just stick it on XBLA as it is for a reduced price.


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Old 06-07-2009, 11:39 AM   #3
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Could they replace the instruments used in the iMuse tracks to be higher quality and based on real recordings?
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Old 06-07-2009, 11:42 AM   #4
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I think they' try a Maniac Mansion SE, Zak and Loom first and in the meantime start selling a new MI collection including the SE.

It's a bit like with Sierra VGA remakes from the early 90s.


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Old 06-07-2009, 11:54 AM   #5
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Not sure... with Telltale's series coming out, focusing on MI might make more sense for them...

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Could they replace the instruments used in the iMuse tracks to be higher quality and based on real recordings?
Possibly... I don't know how newer versions of iMuse handle digital files... anyway, they'd have to create a LOT of audio layers that get mixed in real-time.

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Old 06-07-2009, 12:00 PM   #6
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I really hope they do MI2 too. Maybe they could rescan the original background paintings at a high resolution.
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Old 06-07-2009, 12:06 PM   #7
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I think someone suggested that once and, someone else, maybe Steve Purcell, said it wouldn't necessarily work because the original paintings are quite small themselves (being designed for such a small in-game resolution) - but I might be totally wrong about that.


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Old 06-07-2009, 12:24 PM   #8
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You're partially remembering from the chat event we had with Bill Tiller the Christmas before last (http://www.mixnmojo.com/features/rea...hat07&page=1):

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<Zaarin> Monkey Island with those high-res scans they showed on the site a while ago would be nice.. )
<Bill Tiller> I did rescan MI marker backgrounds in high res and they actaully didn't look good at all belive it or not
<Bill Tiller> the problem was that all the flaws and mistakes and rough marker lines showed up in highres and it made it look noisey and messy
<Bill Tiller> I think they look good in low res because all those rough elements don't show up or get blurred out
<Bill Tiller> Monkey Island 2 was all marker
<Bill Tiller> Monkey Island 1 was done with dpaint and amouse
<Bill Tiller> Monkey Island 2 was markers on marker paper with some dpaint touch up
<manny_c44> Were those about the size of a postcard...or am I imagining that?
<Bill Tiller> no they were a bit bigger than that
<Bill Tiller> about 8 inches across and five high
<Bill Tiller> they look great in real life but the scanns just picked up alll the rough flaws
<Bill Tiller> I think they did the art based on the fact it was going to be low res so that is whay they wouldn't look good in highres
<Bill Tiller> I think if they were going to do it high res they would have done it on bigger paper
<Udvarnoky> Still though those original paintings look fantastic.
<Bill Tiller> steve and Peter chan did an awesome job, in fact I thought that for Monkey Island 3 we would just copy that style
It sounds like they could rescan the art and then touch it up to get rid of the mistakes/roughness -- and add more detail as well.
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Old 06-07-2009, 12:27 PM   #9
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Well, the painting of Wally's Workshop in the "Rogue Leaders" book spans two pages, although it's labeled as only being a "test".



And it looks a little different from the version in the game:


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Old 06-07-2009, 12:39 PM   #10
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Right the MI2 backgrounds were never intended to be scanned in hi-res, and a lot was touched up after the scanning process, but it doesn't change the fact that it would still be awesome to see them try to rescan the original art and do whatever it is they have to do to make it look acceptable. Those original backgrounds are way too awesome to discard completely. I would also be a proponent of a giant gallery of all the original painted backgrounds being released. Between the art book and the 20th anniversary images we have a nice handful, but I need to see them all.
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Old 06-07-2009, 01:26 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Laserschwert View Post
- MI1 is probably 1/2 the volume of MI2
- The art in MI2 is much more refined than the art in MI1, thus remaking the backgrounds would be much more difficult
They did a similar refining in MI1SE too, as they animated the backgrounds which were still images before, this sure reduces the difference in size here.
Quote:
- MI1 has about 40 minutes of music... MI2 has about 2 hours... re-recording it would be a much bigger task
It sure is. But listening to EMI, I have good faith to the team to do it right.
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- MI2 uses iMuse to fade between different music-tracks and
As do CMI and EMI, so what? Technically with a slight different approach, though. But the result is what counts.
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-arrangements... adapting that to digital audio requires a lot of work
As repainting all the graphics does. If they really can release MI1SE for 10-15$, then a few more $ for MI2SE, as it is indeed more work, shouldn't hurt.
Quote:
- if adapting MI2's iMuse-score is too complex to transfer to digital audio, they could simplify the way the music plays in the game, and simply crossfade in case of a music change
Like CMI and EMI do. No problem. The only real compromise to make would be when entering/leaving the drinking contest cottage. There is a graduate tempo change. Changing that particular iMuse feature isn't such a bad idea, as this part always worked quite glitchy and ended in a completely wrong tempo sometimes.
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Originally Posted by elTee View Post
Maybe they'll investigate how people feel about the updated graphics, because if it turns out a lot of people don't mind playing the old version they could just stick it on XBLA as it is for a reduced price.
The new graphic is good enough to me, though I wouldn't mind if it weren't updated at all. I'm most excited about the voice acting and the rerecorded music.
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Originally Posted by Laserschwert View Post
I don't know how newer versions of iMuse handle digital files... anyway, they'd have to create a LOT of audio layers that get mixed in real-time.
It can be done, and a DVD as the medium should offer enough space for it. They do MI1SE as a download, but it doesn't mean they have to do the same with a possible MI2SE. Releasing it just on DVD makes sense, considering the extra complexity of the game resources.
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Old 06-07-2009, 01:40 PM   #12
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I dunno, I really hope they remake more of their old adventure games... The first thing I thought when I saw SMI:SE was "Are they going to remake MI2 as well?". I mean I know the chances of it happening all ride on how well SMI:SE does. But even though some people don't like the art design in it, I'm sure it will still sell really well. Putting it on the XBLA makes it easier for more people to get ahold of it... now they need to put it on the PSN Store too so they have a wide range of people to get interested in this classic game reborn.
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Old 06-07-2009, 01:48 PM   #13
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I think LucasArts will almost certainly do more games like this, but it's difficult to say if they'll do MI2 next, or move on to a different series. The fact that they are also including Fate of Atlantis on SoK, Darrel Rodriguez talking about the "Heritage Program", and the press release which stated "More announcements to come" or something like that, make more things in the same vein very likely. MI2 would definitely be near the top of my list for what I'd like them to do next.


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Old 06-07-2009, 02:06 PM   #14
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The only real compromise to make would be when entering/leaving the drinking contest cottage. There is a graduate tempo change. Changing that particular iMuse feature isn't such a bad idea, as this part always worked quite glitchy and ended in a completely wrong tempo sometimes.
You know, real musicians can increase their tempo while playing as well. From what I can remember, imuse does it to the MIDI on-the-fly, but doing the same with real musicians and some mixing shouldn't be that hard with all the tools available today. With enough work, I believe the MI2 soundtrack could be carried over.
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Old 06-07-2009, 02:16 PM   #15
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You know, real musicians can increase their tempo while playing as well.
Of course. If they are playing live, they just need the conductor to give the sign at the desired moment. One problem, though: We don't have an orchestra in our living room, but prerecorded tracks.
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From what I can remember, imuse does it to the MIDI on-the-fly, but doing the same with real musicians and some mixing shouldn't be that hard with all the tools available today.
Except that time stretching sounds awful most of the time. That's the reason I hate pitch corrected audio in movies with PAL speedup, and I rarely use such effects when I'm working on megamixes.
I'd say, ditch the effect and record a special transition cue with the desired speedup and blend it in smoothly. That will work much better. I guess, most users won't even notice the difference.
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Old 06-07-2009, 02:17 PM   #16
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A fully reworked MI2 soundtrack would be worth the price of the game by itself.


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Old 06-07-2009, 02:44 PM   #17
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I'd say, ditch the effect and record a special transition cue with the desired speedup and blend it in smoothly. That will work much better. I guess, most users won't even notice the difference.
That's what I was getting at
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Old 06-07-2009, 02:47 PM   #18
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A fully reworked MI2 soundtrack would be worth the price of the game by itself.
I always wondered why Lucasarts redid the soundtrack for SMI but never did it for MI2... always seemed strange to me that it was ignored.
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Old 06-07-2009, 03:11 PM   #19
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I always wondered why Lucasarts redid the soundtrack for SMI but never did it for MI2... always seemed strange to me that it was ignored.
Back then all the iMuse-stuff wasn't possible with digital audio... I'm still not sure if it is today... and MI1 had the music simply playing in the background, without reacting to the player's actions, so it wasn't much of a problem to substitute the MIDI-music with CD-tracks.

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Old 06-07-2009, 03:31 PM   #20
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For me the best music has MI 2! But the LeChuck Theme of MI 1 is the best! It´s the "fastest" too. In MI 2 it is a little bit boring.
CMI is very atmospheric yeah but MI 2 has the best music!

I´m atbin forward to the atmosphere in MI 1: SE.
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Old 06-07-2009, 04:19 PM   #21
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I totally love Purcell's work for MI2, I'd love to see a version using that artwork. (I don't see why LucasArts are so worried about "tying the graphics together" -- CMI Guybrush and backgrounds looked nothing like the previous games: As long as they look GOOD then it's fine.)

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Old 06-07-2009, 04:22 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by fizzymitsu View Post
I always wondered why Lucasarts redid the soundtrack for SMI but never did it for MI2... always seemed strange to me that it was ignored.
It was just the beginning of exploring the possibilities with CD-ROM technology back then. MI1 had a very basic music engine which was easy to substitute with CD audio. It was just impossible to combine this kind of enhancement with iMuse back then.
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Old 06-07-2009, 05:28 PM   #23
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It was just the beginning of exploring the possibilities with CD-ROM technology back then. MI1 had a very basic music engine which was easy to substitute with CD audio. It was just impossible to combine this kind of enhancement with iMuse back then.
Yeah I know.... but it seemed kinda like MI2 got the shaft, with other games like the Indiana Jones games getting voice and SMI and others getting remastered music. Just so much potential lost forever... unless they decide to remake it now, which would be freaking great! I've always wanted to know what some of those themes would sound like with actual instruments playing the parts.
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Old 06-07-2009, 06:52 PM   #24
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Yeah I know.... but it seemed kinda like MI2 got the shaft, with other games like the Indiana Jones games getting voice and SMI and others getting remastered music.
Voice is a different thing.
Me too wondered, why Loom and Indy4 got a talkie version not long after their initial release, but MI1 and MI2 never did. I'm very excited that they finally decided to make a MI1 talkie, and I sure would appreciate a MI2 talkie, even when nothing else is changed on the game. Having an iMuse digital soundtrack would be even better of course.

In Loom, having voice acting as CD audio wasn't exactly the best idea either. It was very obvious that they were experimenting with new technology then. Seeing to what degree that game was compromised, I'm really glad that MI1 wasn't their first try, and they decided to go for enhanced music instead. Indy4 was better already, on the technical side at least. The sound quality and the voice acting was still rather poor, even for a Soundblaster game. Yet, it's nice to have them.
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Old 06-08-2009, 03:30 AM   #25
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With the Monkey Island games I think it was a problem of integrating sound files into such complicated dialogue trees.


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Old 06-13-2009, 09:55 AM   #26
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From memory (and I cant remember right now where I heard/read this) when Aric Wilmunder was getting speech working with SCUMM, he did the initial tests with MI2 and there were a few lines of test dialog recorded. Once it was sort of working it was migrated to Loom/Indy.

My assumption was always the same as elTee - that it was a complicated job, and a lot easier to manage when making a new game. Also at the time it probably wasnt commercially viable to re-release it with bolted on speech.

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Old 06-13-2009, 11:25 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by fizzymitsu View Post
I've always wanted to know what some of those themes would sound like with actual instruments playing the parts.
Well, you've got at least one MI2-track revived in MI3 (and thus played with - some - real instruments):

Captain Kate's Boat / Booty Island from MI2
Falling Off the Cliff from MI3

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Old 06-13-2009, 11:27 PM   #28
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Well spotted, LS!

Not sure it anyone's seen these, but they're funny! (And MI2 related)

http://www.newgrounds.com/portal/view/111996

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Old 06-14-2009, 12:29 AM   #29
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All depends on how well SMI sells...then anything can happen if it sells well...



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Old 06-14-2009, 05:44 AM   #30
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Well spotted, LS!

Not sure it anyone's seen these, but they're funny! (And MI2 related)

http://www.newgrounds.com/portal/view/111996
Haha, not seen that for years. The 'Zoiks, Walt!' clip still cracks me up.


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Old 06-14-2009, 06:24 AM   #31
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Same here, I'd forgotten how good that was. Thats up there with rusty anchor for lec-related flash excellence.

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Old 06-17-2009, 08:29 AM   #32
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- The art in MI2 is much more refined than the art in MI1, thus remaking the backgrounds would be much more difficult

The art in MI2 is scanned, all they have to do is re-scan it at a higher resolution.

- MI1 has about 40 minutes of music... MI2 has about 2 hours... re-recording it would be a much bigger task

- MI2 uses iMuse to fade between different music-tracks and -arrangements... adapting that to digital audio requires a lot of work

I disagree. Keep the music in a synthesized format (there's plenty of ways to make it sound better than MIDI while still using sync formats, I was always impressed by the SNES music format, just sounds so much better than MIDI because the format allows for fully customized sounds so it doesn't sound so synthetic), update it ... do what you have to do...

- Using MI1 to test out receptions of an SE makes sense, as it's one of the most successful LA-titles, and yet not as complex as a lot of their other games... this doesn't mean, that MI1's volume is the maximum they're willing to invest into

Yeah, well, MI2 is only a sequel nowhere near as popular as the first. Think about how many systems MI1 was released on, many more than MI2 ever touched. MI2 "fans" are a subset of MI fans; although by now you'd expect MI2SE to sell the same as MI1SE ...

Gabez - Tiller is hardly an authority on MI1/MI2 art, he wasn't involved in it at all. If the scans can't be digitally fixed for use, then I'm sure Purcell at least would be willing to get involved in re-doing them. Scanners have come a long way, and today there are much better programs to touch-up scans that "dpaint".

At any rate, I've just previewed this:

http://speechproject.mixnmojo.com/

And it's actually pretty good! When finished it may even be better than MI1SE!
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Old 06-17-2009, 08:37 AM   #33
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The art in MI2 is scanned, all they have to do is re-scan it at a higher resolution.
No, that's no all there is to it. The artwork was never supposed to be used at HD-resolution, so simply scanning it wouldn't do it. They'd have to paint a lot of details in, and it's easy to mess these great paintings up if you're not very skilled at this.

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Old 06-17-2009, 08:38 AM   #34
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Yeah, well, MI2 is only a sequel nowhere near as popular as the first. Think about how many systems MI1 was released on, many more than MI2 ever touched. MI2 "fans" are a subset of MI fans
Woah there, Nellie. MI2 sold more in its first month than the entire run of MI1, IIRC.

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Old 06-17-2009, 08:46 AM   #35
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Keep the music in a synthesized format (there's plenty of ways to make it sound better than MIDI while still using sync formats, I was always impressed by the SNES music format, just sounds so much better than MIDI because the format allows for fully customized sounds so it doesn't sound so synthetic), update it ... do what you have to do...
MIDI is just a protocol for transferring data between equipment, it has nothing to do with the quality of the sound being generated.
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Old 06-17-2009, 08:46 AM   #36
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While I don't mean to disrespect what the speech project is doing, what is the point exactly? Isn't the Special Edition going to basically do exactly what it's trying to do, except with professional voice acting as well as the original cast?

I know the Special Edition also comes with redone art and whatnot, but I imagine someone like Benny will quickly work out how to isolate the speech and just have the new voices. This is based on SCUMM after all, which the Mojo community has a long history of hacking.


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Old 06-17-2009, 08:52 AM   #37
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No, that's no all there is to it. The artwork was never supposed to be used at HD-resolution, so simply scanning it wouldn't do it. They'd have to paint a lot of details in, and it's easy to mess these great paintings up if you're not very skilled at this.
I don't see why they have to "add detail". Every graphic in MI2 would look better if re-scanned, and then re-sized to 320x200 using a modern colour quantizer to reduce to 256 colours (minus "shared pallet" whatever that is 16 or 32 colours). I'd imagine they'd all hold up well at 640x400 as well, and yeah they probably do need a bit of work, but that's what background artists are for, they should be able to re-paint a painting onto a larger canvas.
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Old 06-17-2009, 08:52 AM   #38
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While I don't mean to disrespect what the speech project is doing, what is the point exactly? Isn't the Special Edition going to basically do exactly what it's trying to do, except with professional voice acting as well as the original cast?

I know the Special Edition also comes with redone art and whatnot, but I imagine someone like Benny will quickly work out how to isolate the speech and just have the new voices. This is based on SCUMM after all, which the Mojo community has a long history of hacking.
I have a feeling the speech project will wind down now. Seems too much work since most people won't care once the Special Edition hits. Shame for them because they were doing good work. Maybe they can work on some other non-speech SCUMM games.
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Old 06-17-2009, 08:56 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by Thrik View Post
While I don't mean to disrespect what the speech project is doing, what is the point exactly? Isn't the Special Edition going to basically do exactly what it's trying to do, except with professional voice acting as well as the original cast?
There's no "original cast", the dialogue was never written to be spoken.
Quote:
I know the Special Edition also comes with redone art and whatnot, but I imagine someone like Benny will quickly work out how to isolate the speech and just have the new voices. This is based on SCUMM after all, which the Mojo community has a long history of hacking.
It's already been demonstrated by LucasArts that the game-mode can be changed in-game, but that isn't the point. The "fan-talkie" version is good from the preview, and there's no reason why it can't be completed!
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Old 06-17-2009, 09:05 AM   #40
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Originally Posted by plamdi.com View Post
I don't see why they have to "add detail".
That's just what they did. They sharpened edges, clarified important objects and probably made changes and adjustments, as necessary, throughout. (It would be silly to get Purcell to paint a whole new background if there were only minor changes, for example.)

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